Vivienne Westwood backs UK's live solar-powered crowdfund

The first live crowdfund in the UK – backed by Dame Vivienne Westwood – aims to generate millions of pounds worth of investment and create a long-term legacy within the renewable energy sector. 

The ‘Off the Grid’ live crowdfund was hosted by Trillion Fund – an organisation 'aiming to drive forward the $1 trillion of annual global investment required to reach the scale of clean energy generation needed to prevent further global warming through crowdfunding'.

The three organisations pitching for investment on the night were Nottingham Community SunshareThe Converging World and Good Energy Cornwall

Dr Michael Stein founded Trillion Fund in 2009 after meeting James Lovelock – the scientist who formulated the Gaia Hypothesis and fellow of the Royal Society. “That meeting is what woke me up to the challenge,” Dr Stein said.

“I realised that as important as a global remit is, unless you can actually move money and capital and invest into renewable energy infrastructure, we weren’t going to be able to turn off the fossil fuel taps.”

Where I’m coming from is very simple – what’s good for the planet is good for the economy.

Vivienne Westwood

Guests at the Off the Grid solar-powered party in East London. Photo Credit: Trillion Fund

Dame Vivienne Westwood – whose appearance attracted the attention of the national press and figures from the entertainment industry – kicked off the event in a somewhat aloof style. “Well I haven’t planned what I want to say, I don’t know what’s going to come out of my mouth,” she said. 

“We’re now at a point where we are aware of the incredible danger we face. Where I’m coming from is very simple – what’s good for the planet is good for the economy.

Trillion Fund is creating the opportunity to invest in renewable energy on the level where people who’ve only got £50 can put their money into it,” the controversial fashion icon concluded.

Demonstrating the commitment of all of the organisations involved to the environment, all of the power used to light the East London venue, heat the ovens for the canapés and blast the music was generated by solar panels – making it London’s biggest entirely solar-powered solar party to date. 

Julia Groves, managing director at Trillion Fund, said: “The beauty of renewable energy is that, because of the size of the projects, they lend themselves well to crowdfunding – it’s not likely you’ll see any crowd funding for fossil projects. It gives ordinary people and investors the chance to get a financial return whilst helping the UK to generate more cleaner, greener renewable energy.”

She concluded her passionate speech: “My children won’t be asking ‘Daddy what did you do in the war?’ But ‘Mummy what did you do to fight climate change?’”

Renewable energy crowdfunding platform Trillion Fund announced earlier this year a merger between themselves and Buzzbnk – the UK's first crowdfunding platform for the social enterprise sector. The merger means that as a joint entity they are the biggest social crowdfunding platform in the UK. 


Header photo credit: Trillion Fund